Crypto and Money Laundering: An Inconvenient Truth

  • Crypto is an awful vehicle for laundering money for a few reasons. One, KYC is stringent in the industry and it’s simply much easier to open a bank account with fake identification documents at a small local or regional bank. Two, you simply cannot move large sums of money into crypto without people noticing, and three, it is trackable. Even most so-called  “privacy coins” are much more transparent and easier to trace than traditional cash.

    Unlike cash, which is nearly impossible to track, Blockchain has proven to be one of the most powerful tools for law enforcement. The immutable, public nature of the blockchain makes crypto a poor choice for money laundering because it allows law enforcement to uncover and trace money laundering far easier than cash transactions. 

  • At Binance, after joint efforts with Chainalysis, demixing, and working with law enforcement, Binance was able to freeze an estimated $5.8M worth of related cryptocurrency.
  • While Binance is unable to comment on its specific correspondence with Slovakia’s national police, we can say that following the allegation about Lazarus opening dozens of anonymous accounts on crypto exchanges, we fully cooperated with requests received from Slovak authorities and helped them to identify both accounts at Binance as well as other exchanges.